Contact  ·  Download CV  ·  Watch TEDx talk

Current work

As an École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) fellow co-funded by Marie Sklodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowships from the European Commission, Dr. Catherine De Wolf is conducting postdoctoral research with Prof. Corentin Fivet on environmental impacts of applying circular economy principles to building structures, in the Structural Xploration Lab (SXL) within the smart living lab, a research and development center for the built environment of the future. She is also founder of De Wolf Environmental Architecture Thinking.


After studying Civil Engineering and Architecture at the Vrije Universiteit Brussels (VUB) and the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), she obtained a Masters of Science in Building Technology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). This was followed by a PhD in Architecture: Building Technology at MIT with Prof. John Ochsendorf. Her dissertation was about low carbon pathways for structural design. During her PhD, she also worked in the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge.

Previous Work

Professional experiences include working for Arup, Ney & Partners and other leading architectural and structural design firms. Ensuring a continuous link between academic background and industrial real life experience is a key element in Catherine's work. Her workshops at offices as well as in universities also reflect this concern. She also launched the Structural Engineers 2050 Commitment Initiative with the Carbon Leadership Forum and structural engineering companies such as Arup and Thornton Tomasetti.

Maddy Keynote

Invited as a Maddy Keynote speaker, Catherine shares her visions for more sustainable architecture during this major, live-broadcasted event about innovation in France

Engineering Club

Invited to give a talk at the Engineering Club in London, Catherine speaks about innovative engineering design and practice towards a circular economy in the construction industry

Egis Concept

To establish a true industry-academia collaboration, Catherine works with design office and engineering workshop Elioth on life cycle assessment and circular economy assessment

IOC Think Tank
International Olympic Committee

The International Olympic Committee (IOC), Corentin Fivet, Martin Fröhlich, Tiago Borges, and Catherine De Wolf co-organised a workshop on Sustainable Sport Infrastructure at the Olympic House

European Commission

Catherine worked for the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission on European LCA databases and tools and on Level(s) projects across European countries

Notre-Dame Reloaded
University of Liechtenstein

As guest lecturer at the University of Liechtenstein, Catherine taught students about reusing materials to redesign the Notre-Dame in the Advanced Studio Upcycling: Notre-Dame reloaded

Tramdepot Reuse
EAST & Losinger Marazzi

Invited as expert, Catherine taught students about reusing elements of the structure of an old tramdepot in a workshop led by the Elementary Architecture and Studies of Types (EAST)

Bringing embodied carbon upfront

As expert for Ramboll Engineering, Catherine contributed to the latest report by the World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) on how to reach a zero-carbon built environment

Environmental impact of cement

Catherine presented the role of the cement industry on reducing emissions based on the results from the ECF report

Europe Climate Foundation

Read the latest report on decarbonising the cement and concrete sector written for the Europe Climate Foundation co-authored by Catherine at EPFL

International Energy Agency

Read the latest report on material efficiency in clean energy transitions from the International Energy Agency co-reviewed by Catherine

Launch event Switzerland

Catherine presented the benefits of circular economy at Madaster's launch event in Switzerland

De Morgen

Catherine was interviewed by De Morgen Magazine within a series on visionary architects


Catherine participates in a debate at Batibouw on the ecological impact of the construction sector

Circular Columns

Catherine is writing a series of interviews on circular economy in the building sector


Catherine was interviewed by B NK to talk about the environmental impact of buildings

European Commission

Catherine co-organised a webinar on how to use Level(s), a voluntary reporting framework to improve the sustainability of buildings

Swiss Resources Forum

Catherine talked about the principles of circular economy at the Swiss Resources Forum in the Empa Institute

Planet Week

Globally operating architecture and urbanism practice MVRDV invited Catherine to talk at their "Planet Week"

IASS Boston
Hangai Alumni Talks

Hangai Alumni Catherine spoke in a plenary session of the Intenational Association of Shell and Spatial Structures (IASS) 

Embodied Carbon in Buildings

Read the Springer book co-edited and co-authored by Catherine: "Embodied Carbon in Buildings: Measurement, Management and Mitigation"

EU Cost Action

Catherine joined the REthinking Sustainability TOwards a Regenerative Economy group (RESTORE) and will hold a workshop at Greenbuild Europe

Seminar series
UC Berkeley and Stanford

Join the seminar series on low carbon structural design at ETH Zurich, UC Berkeley, Stanford University and California Polytechnic State University

TEP Venezuela
Trazando Espacios Públicos

Check out the school park built from reused waste materials with the schoolchildren in collaboration with the NGO created by Ana Vargas in Venezuela

The New Carbon Architecture

Read the chapter on embodied carbon research in the new book "The New Carbon Architecture"


Read the latest column on "Timber Architecture" by clicking on

TEDx talk

Watch the TEDx talk on new low carbon materials in Panthéon-Sorbonne, Paris on YouTube

Innovators under 35

Catherine was one of the laureats of the Innovators under 35 Belgium Awards

 Dr. ir. arch. Catherine De Wolf · Scientist EPFL
 PhD & MSc MIT · Civil Engineer & Architect VUB & ULB


Website coded by Catherine De Wolf 
Copyright © 2019 Catherine De Wolf